Ukrainian president instructs defense minister to investigate recent incidents
The Ukrainian army said five of its servicemen were killed this week despite a cease-fire with pro-Russian separatists in the east of the country.
This brings the total number of Ukrainian soldiers killed since the beginning of the year to 11.
Three soldiers died Sunday in an explosion of an unknown device as they were moving to their positions for duty, the military said. These are the latest casualties in a conflict that has claimed the lives of about 14,000 people.
Earlier, two Ukrainian soldiers were killed by snipers. It happened when Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and a group of Western diplomats were in the area.
Zelensky’s office reported that the president instructed the defense minister and commander-in-chief of the armed forces to go to the east of the country and investigate the latest incidents.
In the second half of last year, four soldiers died after the sides agreed to a truce to give politicians and diplomats time to resolve the conflict peacefully.
Swedish Foreign Minister Ann Linde, who rotated to head the OSCE, said during her first trip to the region in January that additional measures were needed to maintain the ceasefire.